Checking This Out

10 Of The Best Survival Books For When Things Fall Apart, from Book Riot.

Last on the list is a book about black people and the outdoors. Isn’t it weird that black people’s relationship to the outdoors merits a book? Not really. Way back in the dark ages, when we first moved to New England from Colorado, we went to a nearby park with a friend. It had a lovely lake and a small beach with a lot of people just having fun. Around five o’clock, although it was midsummer and quite light still, everyone started packing up and leaving. We asked our friend why everyone was leaving and she replied that now is when the black people come to use the beach and swim in the lake. What? WHAT? There are separate TIMES for blacks and whites to swim in a lake? WTF was our reaction, but apparently this was the norm back then. I never quite got over that. I am white, but good grief, I could as easily have been born black, or yellow, or red, possibly green but I seriously doubt that. We had never knowingly witnessed discrimination in Colorado, and I don’t think it would have occurred to us that it could happen. We were still pretty young, early twenties, when we moved here, so maybe were just not aware, but it came as such a shock. Later on, same friend and her husband were walking with us in Newport when we passed a mixed race couple, and although he said nothing to them, he did express to us his disgust. Stunned is what we were.

My mom raised me to not look down on anyone because of color or dress or whatever. She always said it’s what’s inside that matters, and how the person treats others. That was what counted. Being from Puerto Rico, I always thought she must have suffered discrimination since coming to the mainland, but she never spoke of it. Just made sure we did not discriminate against anyone.

Anyway. the book reminded me of the lake and how my husband and I felt about it at the time. Kind of took the shine off of being in New England, which we only knew from old Doris Day movies and the like. Priscilla curtains and widow’s walks, Old Cape Cod, and all that jazz. Which reminds me. You can rent Christmas in Connecticut, one of my favorite movies ever, on Prime for around 3 dollars. Which reminded me that when my sister came to visit us, she mentioned something about Massatusetts. Seriously, sister dear? We don’t live in Massatusetts, since there IS NO SUCH PLACE. Made me laugh, anyway. 🙂

Looking for a picture to illustrate this post. Go Google blacks and whites swimming together. Surprise! And it’s not dolphins.

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